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Dad's-Shirt Sack

Martha Stewart Kids, Volume 3 2002

Get a load off Dad's back by turning one of his button-downs into a sweet knapsack for his little girl. The lightweight fabric is perfect for a summer bag -- and just the right size to stow a bathing suit and sunglasses, or a sticker collection when going to a friend's house. Our bag is made from a large-size men's shirt; these dimensions will work with an extra-large shirt, too.

Shirt-Sack How-To
1. Button shirt; lay it sideways, button side up with button-placket half at the bottom. Cut along each side seam. Then cut a large rectangle from top layer, cutting from one side seam to the other and keeping three buttons centered, so section measures 10 3/8 inches across.

2. Measure 3/4 inch up from the top of the placket, and fold the top down along that line. Cut through both layers at once to straighten the edge of the top layer and trim excess from the bottom layer.

3. Starting 3/8 inch down from the top, sew both sides and bottom together using a 3/8-inch seam allowance. Trim corner seam allowance at an angle.

4. Unbutton; turn right-side out through placket. With buttons facing up, sew across top 3/8 inch below fold, creating a channel. In bottom corners, install two standard-size grommets. Knot one end of a 1 1/2-yard-long 3/16-inch cord; thread other end up through grommet, through channel, and through other grommet. Have child try on sack to determine length of the cord; knot and trim.

Comments (2)

  • 16 Jun, 2008

    Now this is the best idea I've read in a long time.. its a good feeling to be able to give something back, and I've lots of mens and womens shirts laying around doing nothing.. thanks for the tip.

  • 17 Feb, 2008

    This would also be fun for a boy, using a flannel shirt. And if you wanted to make it even more "girly", an iron-on applique would set it off nicely. Lastly- why not recycle of bunch of shirts and donate these bags, filled with some craft supplies, to the Red Cross, Fire Dept, or local homeless shelter for kids in crisis? Recycling good deeds= great karma!